Blog

Event Series and Message

I mentioned in my previous e-mail that I thought it might help to provide all of you with a forum to discuss everything going on.  For the indefinite future, I want to provide an opportunity to talk about how you are coping and share ideas that might help others.  If...

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COVID-19 Discussion

Although events are on hold, I still wanted to provide a forum to discuss everything that's going on in the world.  So I am going to be hosting smaller gatherings through Zoom.  If you are interested in participating, let me know. Here are some questions that have...

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More Food and Health Tips

Focusing on the quality of my food has led me to think more about my health, which is especially important at a time like this.  With all the news stories that we are bombarded with, it can be very easy to become fearful and feel like we don't have any control. ...

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Tips on Buying Food

Since communal gatherings are on hold, I thought I would provide some actionable tips that might be helpful: Small Grocery Stores A few grocery stores I go to are Plum Market in Old Town, Dill Pickle in Logan Square, and Local Foods in Bucktown.  They haven't been too...

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World Peace and Other Fourth Grade Achievements

"The teacher certification monopoly has nothing whatsoever to do with the mastery of an intellectual discipline.  Indeed every year, many competent people are denied admission to the business or forced out of it because they know too much."  John Taylor Gatto,...

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Film Screening Initiative

One of Community Dining's new initiatives focuses on screenings of films that stimulate conversation about insufficiently explored topics and challenge people to view these topics through a new paradigm.  Most Likely to Succeed, "a thought-provoking documentary...

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Why Understanding our Food Systems Matters

"The home-cooked meal is revered as the ultimate expression of food integrity." "Human self-actualization, human self-affirmation, I think is actually encouraged and stimulated when we viscerally participate in the physical elements of life."  "A culture that just...

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How Community Dining Has Grown and Changed

As we approach Community Dining's three year anniversary, I continue to refine its focus, which has become more about connecting individually with people than anything else.  Perhaps paradoxically, I've begun to prefer private events where I personally invite each...

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How Community Dining is Being Built

"Why should we be in such desperate haste to succeed and in such desperate enterprises?  If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.  Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far way.  It is...

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Where Community Dining is Headed and How You Can Help

After hosting 42 Community Dining events since April of 2015 and accumulating an e-mail list of over 1,100 people, almost all of whom I've met, I've decided to take a step back and reflect on how I can continue to build authentic community.  Many of these events have...

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Community Dining and the Meaning of Friendship

"Dialogue is the yeast that lightens the bread; & should be paid for at double rate -- whereas by the word-system it counts the same as the dough." Mark Twain "Beware of virtue.  Lao Tza, the Chinese philosopher said, “The highest virtue is not virtue, and therefore...

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Comunity Dining Guest Blog Post Re: Gentrification Event

Community Dining is a local organization that facilitates dinner events that promote the importance of sustainability and health in food. These events are unique because they allow for attendees to socialize in community spaces and frequently meet local decision...

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An Open Letter to My Community: How You Can Help

  Upon starting Community Dining nearly two years ago with little idea about what to expect, I knew challenges would lie ahead, but just assumed I would figure out whatever I needed without much difficulty.  Now I have to admit that the recent Sun Time article about...

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My Response to the Sun Times

Due to an article in the Sun Times regarding the Wed., Feb. 15 Community Dining event with Alderman Joe Moreno, I felt that I should respond.  To clear up any confusion, Community Dining is the host of the dinner, and all of the proceeds will go towards the cost of...

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Entrepreneurship Promotes Transparency

Over the past two years, I have been gathering data on restaurants, bakeries, caterers, grocery stores, juice bars, and delivery services that have a focus on sustainable sourcing that engages us in the means by which we fuel ourselves.  I have also looked up the...

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Food Tank Summit Recap

I had the privilege of attending the Food Tank Summit last month as a member of the media.  It was filled with interesting speakers and attendees with a background in food and agriculture or who had an interest in these areas.  While many of these events can serve as...

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Community Dining: Gunthorp Farms and Kitchfix

Original post:  http://www.personallypaleo.com/entries/communitydining-gunthorpfarms-kitchfix One of the best parts of social media is it's ability to introduce you to new products, new people, new causes, etc.  The community that forms around you is amazing.  A few...

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Expanding Sustainable Food Movement Requires Community

There is a growing movement in Chicago that aims to increase awareness about the importance of growing food locally and sustainably and support local growers that focus on sustainable sourcing.  One can easily find opportunities to learn more about a wide range of...

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Ocean to Table!

      Last week, I got to do something very cool. I was invited to a Seafood Themed Community Dinner organized by Paul Sippil.  The dinner was a part of the farm-to-table themed club Sippil started last year, in an effort to connect people through responsibly sourced...

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Paleo Dinner at Uncommon Ground

I recently attended the Community Dining Paleo Dinner. Community Dining is Paul Sippil’s wonderful concept focusing on strengthening social bonds through communal dining! This event focused on gathering people to get to know each other, try tasty local food at...

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Support Earth’s Healing Cafe and help Right a Wrong

While I have enjoyed connecting people through shared meals, the value of building a strong community delves much deeper, as communities have the power to provide a voice to those who need it most.  The plight of Earth's Healing Cafe serves as a great opportunity to...

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The Plight of Kristine Bunch

Community Dining recently hosted its first community engagement dinner focusing on the topic of wrongful convictions featuring Judy Royal, law professor and co-director of the Women’s Project of the Center on Wrongful Convictions, which she co-founded with professor...

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The Story of My Grandfather and Darby Tillis

According to 18th century judge, jurist, and politician William Blackstone in his treatise on the common law of England, "It is better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer."   Prussian Statesman Otto Von Bismarck, on the other hand, believed...

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Good Food Festival: Bringing the Good Food Movment Together

  FamilyFarmed is a national leader in building the Good Food movement and developing regional, sustainable food systems.  Its annual Good Food Festival & Conference — America’s longest-running sustainable and local food trade show — brings together key stakeholders...

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Special Offers from Local Foods and Baker Miller

I believe there exists a need to let more people know about how to find healthy, affordable food in Chicago, so I like to periodically share special offers from places that I support.  Also, for those who are not aware, I have compiled a comprehensive list of every...

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Spontaneous Order on the Playground and the Nature of Play

Spontaneous order refers to the idea that “stable macro-level patterns—those things that make a complex system a system, an instance of order rather than disorder or randomness — do not come about through design, planning or imposition, but arise instead from the...

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Communities vs. Networks

In a previous e-mail, I discussed various possible root causes of the decline in social engagement and community participation along with the potential consequences.  I also discussed the benefits of community participation and how we can use community dining as a...

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